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I'm lucky: I own a laptop only capable of running Windows Vista. I say this because I had to use said laptop to format an SD card to FAT32 wtih a 32KB cluster, something I found I'm unable to do using the Windows 8.1 Pro formatting tool.

How can I format SD cards, USB thumb drives and hard drives, etc., to FAT32 with a non-Windows-standard cluster size?

During the format on Windows Vista, I returned with an error stating that

The cluster size is too big for the selected file system.

How am I supposed to format FAT32 with a 32KB cluster if that's not physically possible?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

The result to my query was that apparently, when assigning a cluster size to a FAT32 file-system, the size of the disk is very important.

Disks over 2GB appear to be eligible for a 32KB cluster, whereas their lesser counterparts are not. In order to assign a 32KB cluster on a disk that is less than 2GB in size, you need to use a third-party tool.

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HP has a reliable formatting tool for USB drives that is harder to find than you'd think, while SD cards have a dedicated tool.

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Does the tool allow to format with 32 kB clusters? – slhck Feb 20 '14 at 14:03

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